04 February 2011

Sign up for a cancer-free world

Support World Cancer Day by signing the World Cancer Declaration, a global call for action to reduce the cancer burden by 2020.

Support World Cancer Day by signing the World Cancer Declaration, a global call for action to reduce the cancer burden by 2020.

2011 is an important year, not only for the Cancer Association of South Africa (Cansa), but also for the greater global cancer community. With the United Nations Summit for Non-Communicable Diseases taking place in September, member countries of the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) will put the global cancer burden on the UN’s agenda by getting a million people to sign a declaration against cancer.

The UICC is the leading non-governmental organisation dedicated exclusively to global cancer control and works to achieve 11 targets by 2020 including: significant drops in global tobacco consumption; universal vaccination programmes for hepatitis B and human papilloma virus and universal availability of effective pain medication. 

Launched in 2006 and revised in 2008,  the World Cancer Declaration is a tool to help bring the growing cancer crisis to the attention of government leaders and health policymakers in order to significantly reduce the global cancer burden by 2020. It represents a consensus between government officials, public health experts and cancer advocates from around the world who are committed to eliminating cancer as a life-threatening disease for future generations.

Says Dr Eduardo Cazap, President of UICC: "Support World Cancer Day by signing the World Cancer Declaration and help us achieve the goal of one million supporters for a cancer-free world.  With individuals, governments and policy makers of the world working together, we have the ability to ease the global burden of cancer now and for future generations.”

SA campaign launch
Cansa will take the lead in South Africa and launch the campaign on 4 February, with the signing of the declaration by Sue Janse van Rensburg, Cansa CEO and cancer survivor of over 27 years.    

  • Up to 40% of preventable cancers in the world occur in low and middle income countries of which South Africa forms part.
  • Research shows that up to 90% of cancers are caused by environmental factors.
  • One in four South Africans are affected by cancer.
  • One in eight women and one in six men in South Africa are at risk of being diagnosed with cancer.
  • Top cancers affecting South African males are: prostate, lung, and cancer of the oesophagus.
  • Top cancers affecting South African females are: breast, cervix, and colorectal cancer.
  • South Africa has the second highest incidence of skin cancer in the world after Australia.
  • Over 700 South Africans die every year of skin cancer. 

Here's how you can sign up:


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CANSA’s purpose is to lead the fight against cancer in South Africa. Its mission is to be the preferred non-profit organisation that enables research, educates the public and provides support to all people affected by cancer. Questions are answered by CANSA’s Head of Health Professor Michael Herbst. For more information, visit

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